Wareham Police Association hosts blood drive for Rochester child
The Wareham Police Association hosted a blood drive on Wednesday, Oct. 26 in honor of a local child’s battle with a chronic illness.
Rylie Dion is a Rochester resident and patient of Wareham Pediatrics who is struggling with Chronic Cervicofacial Lymphadenitis, a disease which affects the lymph nodes. Lymph nodes help the body fight back against infection and diseases.
Dion had three masses on her lymph nodes that were removed and sent for testing. Unfortunately, one of the larger masses was too risky to remove due to nerves being entangled in it.
2-year-old Dion’s battle inspired approximately 40 members of the community to show up on a rainy Wednesday to donate.
One mother, Emily Belrose, was encouraged to donate after seeing the event flier.
“The little girl looked about my daughters age,” Belrose said.
This was the second time that the Wareham Police Association has hosted a blood drive in collaboration with Boston Children’s Hospital.
However, it was the first time that the blood drive was in honor of a patient.
Wareham Police officer Calib LaRue, a friend of the Dions, decided to show his support by organizing the blood drive.
“I wanted to give something back,” he said.
Dion made a special appearance to accept a $1,000 check for medical expenses. The Police Association was able to raise an additional $1,000 through t-shirt sales, which they donated to Boston Children’s Hospital.
Dion is still receiving monthly treatments for her illness.
“She has a long battle ahead of her,” LaRue said.
T-shirts can be purchased at https://www.bonfire.com/rally-for-rylie. All proceeds will go towards her treatment.